Table_1_TMT-Based Plasma Proteomics Reveals Dyslipidemia Among Lowlanders During Prolonged Stay at High Altitudes.DOCX
Acute exposure to high altitude perturbs physiological parameters and induces an array of molecular changes in healthy lowlanders. However, activation of compensatory mechanisms and biological processes facilitates high altitude acclimatization. A large number of lowlanders stay at high altitude regions from weeks to months for work and professional commitments, and thus are vulnerable to altitude-associated disorders. Despite this, there is a scarcity of information for molecular changes associated with long-term stay at high altitudes. In the present study, we evaluated oxygen saturation (SpO2), heart rate (HR), and systolic and diastolic blood pressure (SBP and DBP) of lowlanders after short- (7 days, HA-D7) and long-term (3 months, HA-D150) stay at high altitudes, and used TMT-based proteomics studies to decipher plasma proteome alterations. We observed improvements in SpO2 levels after prolonged stay, while HR, SBP, and DBP remained elevated as compared with short-term stay. Plasma proteomics studies revealed higher levels of apolipoproteins APOB, APOCI, APOCIII, APOE, and APOL, and carbonic anhydrases (CA1 and CA2) during hypoxia exposure. Biological network analysis also identified profound alterations in lipoprotein-associated pathways like plasma lipoprotein assembly, VLDL clearance, chylomicron assembly, chylomicron remodeling, plasma lipoprotein clearance, and chylomicron clearance. In corroboration, lipid profiling revealed higher levels of total cholesterol (TC), triglycerides (TGs), low-density lipoprotein (LDL) for HA-D150 whereas high density lipoproteins (HDL) levels were lower as compared with HA-D7 and sea-level indicating dyslipidemia. We also observed higher levels of proinflammatory cytokines IL-6, TNFα, and CRP for HA-D150 along with oxidized LDL (oxLDL), suggesting vascular inflammation and proartherogenic propensity. These results demonstrate that long-term stay at high altitudes exacerbates dyslipidemia and associated disorders.